Friday, 17 August, 2018

Facebook Really Is for Old People

Is Facebook for old people? Over-55s flock in as the young leave Analyst: Younger audiences moving off Facebook
Olivia Ford | 15 February, 2018, 02:19

According to eMarketer, 2.2m young people between 12 and 17 - or 71 per cent of social network users in the age bracket - will use Facebook regularly this year, down eight per cent on an earlier forecast.

Facebook usage among kids younger than 12 will drop more than 9%, with declines of about 6% each among 12-to-17-year-olds and 18-to-24-year-olds. According to the report, Snapchat edged out Instagram in both monthly usage and as the favourite social platform among teens in the US, Snapchat actually saw both numbers rise, even as Instagram held steady with usage and fell as a favourite.

Expect more posts by people who think that LOL stands for "Lots of Love", as the number of oldies on Facebook surges and teens jump ship for the happy lands of Snapchat. Facebook has been struggling with attracting younger users for several years, but its efforts don't appear to be making much of an impact as these consumers continue to seek out what's new and innovative in mobile.

Snapchat and Facebook-owned Instagram are expected to add more younger U.S. users, eMarketer said. The firm noted that while Facebook is seeing younger users depart, Snapchat, the ephemeral, photo-based messaging platform that just had its first strong quarter after a rocky first year on the market post-IPO, is poised to add nearly 2 million users below the age of 25. But the proportion of social network users accessing Facebook will continue to decline over the forecast period, eMarketer said. Snapchat is expected to grow by approximately 9 percent to 86.5 million users.

But the fact that eMarketer is predicting declines across the board is a bad sign for Facebook regardless.

According to eMarketer analysts, this tactic could see younger users migrate from Snapchat to other platforms in order to avoid the influx of older people. The number of Instagram users will total 104.7 million in 2018, up 13.1% year over year. While that has pushed Instagram as a likely destination that the younger will like to get along with, Snapchat still seems to hold on to its appeal among its intended clientele.

That has not made a difference to Smith, who says he may open a Facebook account again someday.

According to latest forecasts, around 43% of United Kingdom social network users will be on Snapchat.

The social media network last month acknowledged that changes to the site's design reduced time spent by 5%, or 50 million hours.

Of course, "that's the predicament Facebook is in", Williamson notes. By comparison, Instagram (also owned by Facebook as of 2012) will record 104.7 million US users.

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